[030823, 2257 UTC, ca. 90 miles due west of the CA border, USA, 42 o 0' N/ 126 o 18' W]
We have just passed 42 degrees north and thus have entered into
California. Today we are moving along quite well on a broad reach with
knots of wind behind and a comfortable swell. Nearly perfect sailing.
We have a full genoa and a double reefed main with preventer and are
moving along at hull speed of 7 knots. It's quite beautiful out here;
with the sun out the water is a lovely blue and as far as the eye can see
there are little whitecaps popping up randomly. We've been surprised
at how little wildlife we've seen though. The last few days we've only
seen a few more birds and a single shark, otherwise nothing.
Adapting to a boat that is constantly rocking has been interesting.
Everything takes so much longer than it would normally because everything
has to be braced or wedged in so it doesn't go flying. Cooking a
simple dinner can easily take two hours! The constant movement also makes
you very tired…of course our watch schedule doesn't help that. We have
informal watch during the day and three watches at night…early (2100-midnight), "dog" (midnight -0300) and morning (0300-until the rest of the crew rises!). No one likes the dog watch of course, but it does have the advantage of being witness to the moonrise, which over the vast ocean is a beautiful if not eerie site. Watches involve keeping a lookout for shipping using radar and visual methods, monitoring the winds and the sails and the wind vane self steering. The latter is probably our most important piece of equipment - except perhaps the GPS - as it steers the boat accurately and frees up the crew to perform other functions.
Leslie & Philip with Howard Hanners & Jake the cat.